ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court yesterday ruled that there should be common seniority of police personnel serving in all the establishments, to be maintained by District Police, the Range DIG and Central Police Office.

A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali in November 2015 after hearing all parties had reserved the judgment on the appeals of Sindh government and the police officials against the Sindh Service Tribunal, Karachi.

The judgment announced Friday was authored by Justice Amir Hani Muslim ordered the Sindh government and the Inspector General of Police to prepare the common seniority list of the police personnel, serving in different establishments, within three months of the date of this judgment (May 6, 2016) in terms of Police Rules and submit the compliance report.

The court barred all the establishments, other than the executive police establishment, i.e., in-charge district police and Range DIG, from making direct or indirect recruitment or promotion.

“Being the custodian of the service record of the police personnel, the District police/Range DIG, shall make selection for police personnel for police training and practical training, and no other establishment shall be authorized to make such selection.” The court observed that under Police Rules 1934 the IGP is the competent authority regarding seniority, promotion or trainings.

It has been observed that in many cases the police personnel have completed their statutory period of probation but they were not confirmed for want of notification, and as result of which such officials have suffered in terms of delayed promotion or loss of seniority, which is a sheer negligence and abuse of power on the part of the competent authorities concerned, the judgment said.

The court said that this practice must be brought to an effective end so that injustice may not be perpetrated against such officials. Therefore, in future those police personnel who have completed their statutory period of probation, whether it is three years or two years, they shall stand confirmed whether or not a notification to that effect is issued.

The court noted that ‘cherry picking’ was made in the selection of police personnel for police training or practical training despite the fact they have completed their required period to be eligible for such training. The court said it amounts to denying them of timely promotion for the next scale

The court directed that in future the competent authority shall ensure that the police personnel who have completed their required period to be eligible for trainings shall be forthwith sent for the training. It said if such police officials are bypassed for such trainings on account of default by the department, or to extend a favor to the junior, or negligence by the authority concerned, their inter-se seniority and the accompanying financial entitlements shall not be effected on account of their late joining or completion of training.

The apex court expected that the Sindh provincial government and the IGP will implement the directives given in the judgment in letter and spirit without any undue delay and the seniority list of all the police personnel belonging to any of the establishment created in terms of Rule 1.4 of the Police Rules, 1934 shall be prepared within the time stipulated in the judgment.